Mr. THOMPSON (Lanark):
Mr. Chairman, before recess we were discussing an item including a grant of So .000 to the National Dairy Council. I think we have wandered far away from the item. The National Dairy Council is composed of representatives from the different provincial dairy associations. We have a dairy association in eastern Ontario, one in western Ontario, and there are similar associations in the other provinces. The National Dairy Council has rendered invaluable service to the dairying industry of Canada. For the last twenty-five years I have been the secretary of the dairymen's association of eastern Ontario, and for many years I represented eastern Ontario on the National Dairy Council. This council has appeared on many occasions before the railway board and has secured special rates for dairy products which have saved the farmers and dairymen of this country hundreds of thousands of dollars. They look after what we might call the dominion-wide interests of the dairy business, while the local provincial interests are looked after by the provincial associations. I submit that it is in the interests of the dairymen that this item be permitted to pass.
A remark was made this afternoon by the hon. member for Weyburn, to which I should like to draw attention. He asked why it took two pounds of butter to buy one pound of axle grease. The reason is the treaty with Australia and the agreement with New Zealand made by the government which he supported. They demoralized the daily industry of this Dominion and put it in the condition in which it now is. I was a member of a deputation which waited on the late Mr. Robb, the then Minister of Finance, to ask that this treaty be not put into effect and I stated on that occasion that if New Zealand were permitted to ship her dairy products to Canada, within ten years the dairy industry of this country would be demoralized. But I was but the voice of one crying in the wilderness. We received no sympathy, and we are suffering to-day from the effects of the treaties which were consummated by the late government. Not only did they demoralize the dairy industry of this country, but they have earned' for us the ill will of both New Zealand and Australia. Because of the splendid service rendered to the dairymen of Canada by the National Dairy Council, I submit that this item should pass.